Cost of living help

Dealing with electricity and gas bills

If you are struggling to pay your energy bills or you have already fallen behind with payments, get in touch with your supplier as soon as possible. Your supplier has a range of options to help you. The support they may be able to offer you will depend on your situation. Examples of help include:

  • A short-term payment break or a reduction in your payments
  • Advice on accessing financial support that may be available, like benefits you may be entitled to or grants that could pay towards energy debt
  • Energy efficiency advice

If you pay by direct debit, you can ask your supplier to explain how your direct debit payment has been worked out. Your supplier may be able to reduce the direct debit if:

  • It is currently based on an over-estimate of how much energy you use in a year
  • It includes an amount to repay a debt to your supplier

If you are in arrears, your supplier should work with you to set up a repayment plan that is affordable to you.

National Debtline provide information if you are struggling to pay your utility bills including advice on contacting your provider. 

Dealing with your Water bill

Talk to your water company as soon as you can. Most water companies have schemes to help you pay your bills. For more information visit Severn Trent Community fund.

Dealing with Debt and managing your money

If you owe money and are struggling to pay it back, there are actions you can take.

To start, make a list of your debts and write down the details of each. If you are feeling unsure about how to deal with the debts, contact any of the following organisations for advice and support:

Community Law and Advice Service are a Leicester base charity that provide advice on money management, debts and benefits

Money Helper provide Free and impartial money advice, set up by the government to help people make the most of their money. Includes information on basic bank accounts. They can also be contacted by calling : 0800 011 3797

Citizens Advice Leicestershire are an  independent organisation that’s offers free, confidential advice about a range of subjects including debt and money, budgeting and the cost of living. They can be contacted by calling 0808 2787854 (Monday to Friday from 9am to 4.30pm)

National Debt Helpline are a national charity which offers free and independent debt advice online and over the phone by calling 0808 8084000

Breathing Space Scheme is a government scheme designed to give households 60 days of breathing space from debt. Officially known as the Debt Respite Scheme, if you pass the eligibility checks for the scheme, your creditors won't be able to add interest or fees to your debts, or take enforcement action, for 60 days. You'll still need to keep making your regular payments if you can afford to.

Step Change are a national charity that provide a free debt advice and money guidance online

Cheaper mobile phone and internet services

Ofcom provide advice on social tariffs many mobile phone and broadband providers offer to help people struggling to afford their services. 

Support with Loan Sharks

If you have borrowed money from an illegal loan shark or door step lender you can get support from the Stop Loan Sharks Organisation.

Credit Union

Clockwise credit union provide a range of  financial services and products for resident of Leicester and Leicestershire.

Last updated 28 February 2023
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